Our Baby Fell on the Floor - How It Happened, What We Did, How We Will Prevent It from Happening Ever Again

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash
Our worst nightmare as parents happened just this Monday early morning. While we were soundly asleep, we heard a thud and found our baby on the floor, crying. My first reaction was of shock that I literally screamed out my son's name. At that moment, I didn't know what to do. While everything turned out okay in the end, it could have easily been a lot worse. I'm actually ashamed to write about this but I would like for other parents or soon-to-be-parents to learn from our mistakes and prevent this from happening to their precious little ones:

How It Happened:
At times, I have trouble sleeping at night. It's a condition I've had for the longest time. My go-to solution is to sleep on the other side of the bed (the side without the headboard or the foot of the bed). Unfortunately, my wife and my son also fell asleep this way and we forgot to correct our positions. At around 2AM we heard a loud thud - loud enough to wake me up. My wife also woke up and when I looked at the floor, it was our son lying on his back and crying. 

What We Did:
First things first, we checked our son's overall condition. Did he have any bumps, bruises, or signs of trauma around his body? Did he vomit or looked lethargic? He looked okay and that is where panic set in again as we actually didn't know if we are diagnosing his condition correctly.

Second, we called my sister and asked if we needed to go to the E.R. She said to go immediately even if our son looked okay. Upon arrival at the E.R., nurses and doctors immediately checked our baby. Based on his condition, they confirmed that he looked fine. For extra precaution, we had a skull X-Ray done on the spot just to be sure he was fine inside and outside. No CT Scan was done but doctors advised us to closely-monitor our baby for the next 72 hours. We would need to go to the hospital for any vomiting or unusual behavior occurs.

How We Will Prevent it From Happening Ever Again: 
Stating the obvious, we were too comfortable with how we handled our baby. We underestimated how strong and capable he was at 6 months and we never thought that the worst could happen to us. At the end of the day, we learned our lesson hard and luckily we left unscathed. Moving forward, here's our game plan to avoid a disastrous repeat from happening: 

1. Use a separate bed/crib with guard rails
Stating the obvious here. We have a crib and a co-sleeper that our baby has never used. If you have the option to put your baby on a separate sleeping area from your own bed then that would be the best case scenario.

2. If you want your baby on your bed, build it like a fortress
But, if you're like us who wants to have our baby beside us, the next thing to do is build your bed like a fortress. It's quite uncomfortable to have loads and loads of pillows around you but that's the price we are willing to take to be with our baby more intimately. We also plan to buy temporary guard rails that block off the edges of our bed. Another precaution we want to do is to put soft floor padding around our bed to lessen the impact of any future accidents. 

3. Never underestimate a baby especially when they are asleep
It seems counter-intuitive but our baby moves more when he is asleep. Not only that, but he is able to weave around the bed and our babies easier when he is dreaming. This is probably why sleeping on the foot of the bed was a very bad idea in the first place. When I fell asleep, our baby was beside me very far from any edges but he was able to roll around, maneuver, go on top of my body and pillows and fall from the bed. These are most things he has never done awake yet.

4. "Laging Handa" Mentality
As Boy Scout's motto "Laging Handa" ("Always Ready" in English), it's never wrong to be prepared for the worst. Admittedly, I have not read up on any first-aid and that would have helped a lot in this scenario. Being prepared also means there is a lesser chance that panic will take over your sensibilities and prevent you from making the wrong decisions at the wrong time. From now on, I'll make sure to be better prepared and "train up" on basic first-aid and baby care materials.